I slipped outside, without my cell phone, my camera, my notebook, a freshly brewed cup of tea balancing on a saucer, steam rising on this misty morning. I was walking toward the arbor, hoping not to spill. My eyes were on the piping hot tea in my cup, which reflected the overcast sky. The sky always seems to be overcast on Memorial Day. It is as if it is part of the tradition, honoring our heroes among the clouds, collectively shedding our tears.
I spent some time earlier, checking my emails, my blog, your blog, clicking “likes” on Facebook while simultaneously surfing the morning news on the television. It is easy to honor veterans from the comfort of home, not having to help a veteran put on her prosthesis or witness a friend dealing with the myriad of stress disorders veterans carry – or placing a wreath on a loved one’s grave.
I paused in my journey out back and said a prayer for those who have fallen.
As I stopped, I could see in the green vista more creeping Charlie and clover than grass. A woodchuck was nibbling on his morning meal. A doe was trimming the trees; an ever-changing browse line defining our little territory. A robin took her morning bath, me still in my pajamas, hoping the neighbors wouldn’t see me and I was keenly aware of the liberty I have, walking my little acreage on a misty morning in May, aware in equal measure of those who gave their lives in battle, gratitude in my heart, in my soul.